One of the best-reviewed shows currently streaming features a seminary student who takes hallucinogens to receive visions from God (I must have missed that class during my own seminary stint) and a succubus demon that wears a retainer. This kind of absurd, off-beat humor has come to define Robert and Michelle King’s CBS supernatural procedural Evil, which only recently concluded its third season on Paramount Plus. With its creepy content, scares, and quirky humor, the show has managed to carve out a niche in popular culture, receiving acclaim for its writing, direction, cinematography, and acting. If that near-perfect Rotten Tomatoes score is to be believed, Evil is actually quite good. But how well does the series handle its lofty subject matter? After all, Evil attempts nothing short of an exploration of the crisis of evil in the modern world. Each episode or “case” plays a bit like a parable, though the show trades the distinct moralism of that genre of storytelling for something more ambiguous. While the more obscure approach to the material will certainly frustrate viewers looking for a singular take on the supernatural, there is no denying that Evil has grown into one of the twenty-first century’s most unique series with a strong religious bend. Given the subject matter and graphic sexuality portrayed in seasons two and three, it is not recommended that any Christian watch the sexual deviancies portrayed. But whether even with fast-forwarding of certain scenes the series is worth the Christian’s time is another story—some will say “no,” others will say “yes.” I will say that Kristen and David are no Scully and Mulder. Go and watch The X-Files instead of Evil, as that classic series moves in similar directions with infinitely more depth and nuance.
This Postmodern Realities episode is a in-depth conversation with Journal author Cole Burgett about the themes of the series and his online-exclusive, “The Devil and Kristen Bouchard: A Series Review of Evil”.***Editor’s Note: This article contains spoilers for Seasons One, Two and Three of the CBS/Paramount show Evil.***
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